Custom private instruction and coaching. We can help you build a custom session, series of sessions, or full program to meet your goals and interests. To begin discussing how best to meet your goals, contact Jennifer directly:


Scheduled courses:

ACA Level 3 Instructor Development Workshop (IDW)/Instructor Certification Exam (ICE). August 13-15. San Francisco Bay. Are you interested in teaching other paddlers? This course provides a starting point for individuals interested in building their instructional skills. This course may be taken as an Instructor Development Workshop by individuals who have passed an ACA Level 3 Coastal Kayak Skills Assessment (or equivalent), or as an Instructor Certification Exam by individuals who have successfully completed a Level 3 Coastal Kayak Instructor Development Workshop. For those participating in the course as an IDW, the focus will be on refining your personal skills and knowledge and building out your instructing skills, whether or not certification is your ultimate goal. Those taking the course as a certification exam will have the opportunity to be assessed in one of the best teaching environments available, providing great breadth and variety. For further information or to register, contact Jennifer directly (

ACA Level 4 Open Water Coastal Kayak Skills Assessment. October 16-17. San Francisco Bay and Surf Beach TBD.  All sea kayakers who would like to pursue a broad assessment of their skills as measured in ACA Level 4 conditions can benefit from this course. Successful outcome of a Level 4 assessment is a prerequisite to pursuit of ACA Level 4 Open Water Coastal Kayak Instructor or Trip Leader certification. This course will consist of two days comprising a formative assessment of personal skills and technical knowledge. You will be challenged with performing specific skills and tasks in authentic Level 4 conditions, with the opportunity to receive coaching as needed. For further information or to register, contact Jennifer directly (

ACA Level 4 Trip Leader Training and Assessment. November 19-21 2021. This course is open to any paddler that has passed a Level 4 Open Water Coastal Kayak Skills Assessment. The training course is 3 days and will allow you to gain experience with the technical, trip planning, group management, and leadership skills required to lead other paddlers in open water and coastal environments. The emphasis is on leadership, and will take place in conditions up to and including those where dynamic environments may constrain time available for decision-making, and where communication may be difficult due to noise of wind and waves. The Assessment is 2 days, and requires previous completion of Level 4 Trip Leader training. Venues will be selected to provide a range of leadership environments and may include areas in and around San Francisco Bay, Bodega Bay, Half Moon Bay, or other coastal locations. Consult our recent  blog post for more information on the ACA Level 4 Trip Leader program. For further information or to register, contact Jennifer directly (


Instruction and Trips

Custom instruction can be built around any of the skills and environments listed:

  • Strokes and foundational skills, including edging, bracing, self- and assisted rescues
  • Strokes refinement and blending for intermediate to advanced paddlers
  • Surf zone skills
  • Tidal current paddling, including skills for playing in tide races and tidal rapids
  • Rock gardening skills
  • Sea kayak and short boat surfing
  • Navigation
  • Trip leading and leadership skills
  • Weather for sea kayakers

Jennifer also performs ACA skills assessments at Levels 2, 3, and 4, is available for private, personalized instruction by appointment, and independently conducts ACA instructor trainings, certifications, and updates at Levels 2 and 3.

For private coaching or custom guided trips please contact Jennifer directly ( to discuss your specific project.



Regarding Introduction to Rock Gardening: One of the best days of instruction on the water I’ve ever had. L.W.

Regarding Bracing Clinic: You are a fantastic coach!! So methodical, progressive skills development, always super positive and have the knack to teach even the ones who struggle a bit.  J.F.

Regarding Navigation Clinic:  Everyone should take this class!  J.J.

Regarding Tidal Rapids Paddling class: The most fun I’ve had in a long boat in a  long time! L.O.

Regarding 2 day Practical Leadership course:  What a great class with tons of instruction and learning, thank you Jennifer Yearley and River and Ocean. This was an all encompassing and challenging course, super fun and and a perfect setting. L.S.

Regarding 2 day Practical Leadership course: Of all the instructional courses over the last several years, this was the most comprehensive and all encompassing. The best of the best. R.R.

Regarding 2 day Navigation Clinic: Thank you Jennifer for a very educational, fun and exciting weekend! Your enthusiasm for teaching, knowledge and patience with your students is greatly appreciated. Navigating the waters is much more complicated than anticipated, but your patience and knowledge helped open the door. T.B.

Regarding L4: Rescues and Towing class: This rescue practice ( at this level ) should be a yearly tune up.  Highly recommend this class as part of everyone’s paddling/learning progression. The towing lesson was grest, especially in conditions. Learning to mind the lines and not tangle. Again, invaluable. Best part is practising in conditions. Pushes the edges a bit and increases the learning curve. A fulfilling day. And learnt a whole bunch. R.R.

Regarding Weather for Sea Kayakers course:  For me, you did a great job of teaching some important things about the technical synoptic charts and relating them to real world observations. You had a good energetic presentation style to engage students. Reviewing of the topic, a couple hours after learning, was new to me and worked really well. M. M.

Regarding guided trip along the Marin Headlands: If you ever see that Jennifer Yearley has put together a paddle do yourself a big favor and sign up and get yourself to the put-in ready for a “swell” time irrespective of how strong the tide or how beautiful the day is.  In classic fashion Jennifer devised the itinerary, timed the timing and organized just a splendid day out on the big water.  J.W.